Is Thomas Partey Arsenal’s unsung hero this season?

Are Arsenal fans finally getting what they wanted from this £45 million star?

If anyone is still not convinced that Arsenal will win the Premier League, they haven’t looked at the Premier League standings.

After defeating Brighton 4-2 on Sunday, Arsenal now have 43 points, seven more than second-placed Manchester City. Many factors can be attributed to Arsenal’s excellent form this season, but one that is not getting its due is the club’s midfield, specifically Thomas Partey.

After his “partner in crime”, Granit Xhaka, was given an advanced attacking midfield role, Partey has impressed as a lone defensive midfielder, playing as a traditional number 6. Former Stoke City manager Tony Pulis spoke about Thomas Partey after the Brighton game on BBC Radio 5 Live.

Pulis believes Partey is underappreciated, despite the fact that he is now providing Arsenal with what they desired when they paid £45 million for his services. “Partey keeps everything together in midfield. He has been a really good player for Arsenal this year,” said Pulis to BBC Radio Live, as transcribed by HITC.

“This is the first season where Partey has properly established himself as a massive player for Arsenal.

“In recent seasons, a lack of fitness and form has meant that despite being talented, he wasn’t always the most reliable player in Arteta’s squad for a number of reasons.

“This season, however, he looks absolutely transformed.

“And if Arsenal do go all the way and win their first Premier League title since 2004, then the Ghana international will have earned his medal as much as any of his teammates.” Many would agree with Pulis’ claims; in fact, some will argue that an injury-free Partey can easily deliver Arteta the PL title.

Daniel O


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  1. In Partey,Odegaard and White we have three high class operators who are as good as any in their positions in the Premier League.Not unexpectedly, Xhaka has shaded off since his arduous WC campaign and probably needs a break.No reason why Zinchenko could not be a direct replacement as he plays at left central midfield for Ukraine.I doubt if Arteta will change the starting eleven against Newcastle, but rotation will be needed to avoid burn out in certain players.I have a sneaky suspicion that Villa could get something from their match this afternoon which would add icing to our positive week end.

    1. Grandad i agree with you more so on rotation, saka looked fatigued towards the end. martinelli is just a duracell bunny but he equally needs rest. viera can play from start against newcastle to give saka a much needed breather. we have games against spurs and man u coming up. we like it all not their will be no easy games . we must rotate

    2. A player i’d love to see us buy as cover is Moses Caciedo from Brighton. The man is another Kante. When Brighton beat us at home last season, he completely bossed the midfield. He could be a very shred signing indeed and would give us strength in depth and allow for rotation

  2. Partey is clearly the most important player in our team and him staying injury free is key in potentially becoming PL champions at the end of the season. We currently have no player in the squad who comes close to being able to replicate what he does and we got a reminder yesterday when he left the pitch. So need to buy a CDM this January, question is which player out there? For me there is an outstanding candidate Sofiyan Amrabat who from what I saw of him is a defensive wall(his recovery tackle on Mbappe after he knocked the ball past him one of his standout moments) I also saw a player who could carry the ball forward in tight situations, dribbling out of pressure and his passing looked decent too. So I would love it if I saw breaking news Arsenal have bid £35M-£40M for Amrabat and Fiorentina have accepted.🤞🏽

  3. I agree with the sentiments of this article. What was very noticeable at Brighton yesterday was how leaky our midfield became when Partey was substituted. To a lesser degree, this was also true when Zinchenko and White went off. A bit worrying that three players could make such a difference. We need a deeper squad

  4. pulis is confirming what everyone knows. partey just makes everything easier, its no surprise that his injury contributed massively to us not finishing top 4 last season

  5. Partey’s physicality, touch, decision making, positioning, passing and dribbling skills are almost perfect for the CDM role. I wonder how he’ll perform if he plays a more attacking role, such as Xhaka’s position

    Lokonga showed that he could reach Partey’s level, alhough he needs to fix his inconsistency. Hopefully Arsenal will be patient with him

    1. gai, who exactly did Lokonga “show that he could reach Parteys level”? Not a single GOONER, APART FROM YOU, ON JA, FOR SURE.

      1. Jon, Lokonga’s passes/ physicality are quite good and he’s still very young. It’s his touches that are awful sometimes

        1. gai You have an opinion and thats fine. I do not remotely share it in any way and that too is fine!


  6. An injury free Partey can easily deliver Arteta the Pl title.

    I strongly agree to that, what am not agree to is that he has transformed this year, for many reasons now I have Partey as the best midfielder in his position only rival by a certain Marco Verratti at PSG.
    What in true sense has happened he has remained fit for the longest period since his arrival maybe.

    It is for this reason we have to sign an equal powerful deputy in the January transfer window, my idea of such players are well documented.
    But leaving a regular champions league club to join Arsenal did say a lot about this old master.

    It is reported by talkSPORT in 2019 Thomas Partey talk admiringly how he envisaged forming a strong midfield partnership with Granit Xhaka.

    That remark still amazes me how a top top player who has never kick a ball with Xhaka saw the qualities in probably our most abuse player that ever played for us.

    1. Agree. Probably when Xhaka gets injured, JustArsenal will write an article about how important is Granit Xhaka. It’s a never ending cycle especially from football fans who never played football at all. Fantasy Football and Championship Manager are just games and not reality.

  7. We should just continue to pray he (Partey) is injury free. With him and xhaka in the mid field supplying the likes of saka, Martineli,and Nketiah with the killer passes, Arsenal is unstoppable this season. Not even Man. City can stop them.

  8. An article of very fair comment, in general. But being the irritating little nit pick I am , I question exactly WHO or how many people TRULY DO see Partey as “unsung?” Not Gooners for sure!

    And so, if the rest of football DOES see him as “unsung”- not a point I agree is true, though certainly SOME football people do – then that is all to our good, as SOME clubs will not be trying to buy him. Not that he would be for sale of course.

    1. I totally agree with you jon on the way happy new year to you and everyone else on here.
      When party is on his game which he has been this season he makes us tick. Does the dirty work and even gives license to xhaka to go further forward
      No gooner on here sees party as an unsung hero. He is a vital cog in what is becoming a well oiled machine.
      We all do believe we can do it but again i won’t shout about It until end of march when we are within touching distance.
      I said at the start
      25 wins 8 draws and 5 loses will seen us clinch enough points to make top 4 possibly 3 rd spot.
      How the boys are proving me so wrong. Absolutely smashing it up to date and may they keep proving me wrong
      Onwards and upwards

      1. Alan, That IMO rather unambitious target, at least unambitious from where we are NOW, would get us 83 points and certainly make top four. But would you not agree that for some time now, even the most timid Gooner among us all has been actively EXPECTING, at the very least, top three?

        Personally, I would be very disappointed if we do not get a number more total pooints than 83. Reckon most others will too, even realists like me.
        To be clear, I still think we will finish second and not top. But I do actively EXPECT second and HOPE for better still.

        1. On current form
          Winning the league is not beyond us
          Still a long way to go but enjoying every minute of the journey
          Winning in style is fantastic but just Winning and keep winning is a feeling that has been missing so well done the MA and the boys
          Especially makes it more pleasurable watching the spuds fall apart

    2. Certainly my point Jon, only the foolish who didn’t notice this. Up until recently he’s not the only world class in the team

    3. Pretty much what I was about to post – the “underappreciated” tag made me raise an eyebrow… reading the posts here would suggest that he’s very much appreciated – to the extent that folks here are often in a state of panic over who will replace him if he’s injured again, or needs a rest.

  9. To answer your question – I wouldnt put “Partey” and “unsung” in the same sentence. I think most Arsenal supporter would name him as the key to our continued form.

    Unsung maybe in the sense that we don’t, to the best of my knowledge, have a good song for him yet. Any creative ideas out there?

  10. Not sure ‘unsung’ is the right word.There’s a reason Arteta subbed him at around the 70th minute when he believed BHA were done.

  11. That’s why it’s vital Arteta signs another proven DM to cover partley we all know his injury record is not the best so def need a like for like replacement to step in if the unthinkable happens!

  12. If you go to YouTube and look at those videos showcasing us this season , it sometimes looks like a Thomas Partey highlight. In the games against Chelsea and Brentford he was bossing the entire midfield, he knows when to take one touch and when not to, knows when to take 2 – 3 touches before a pass and knows when to do a 1/2 give and go. He makes Ben white always want to come to the right side of the midfield and into attack because Benji is sure that Partey will see his run and always sit back to cover that space opened up . He is our main man I must say. And every gooner knows he is.

  13. I fully agree with Partey being an extremely important part of our teams success this season. However, I do believe that Arteta showing his brilliance of building the best midfield trio in the league. Without Odegaard, Party and Xhaka, I honestly think we’ll see a different side. We already have in Europa League when Veira and the likes are given a run. Not to say they are not worthy, but they are not the same without those 3. It’s also worrying that our team is so highly dependent on them. Let’s hope they can stay fit – as already mentioned, rotation is going to be key in maintaining our lead.

  14. How about Martinelli? Against West H he scored, yesterday he tried similar goal twice and we scored twice from the resulting rebound. Capped the night with great goal. What a performance by the 21 year old!

    Partey has been immense along with Xhaka this season. We must get someone to cover them. Can’t rely our title charge on Elneny and ASL. Many games to play.


      I replied , saying “There is always one!!”

  15. “If anyone is still not convinced that Arsenal will win the Premier League, they haven’t looked at the Premier League standings.”
    To my mind, this article is about one of the key reasons winning the title is still. We’ve shown the team can still function at a very high level with Eddie in place of jesus, I’m just not sure we have the player(s) to cover for partey if he should be missing for a run of games. Players like xhaka, Saka and Martinelli might also be very difficult to replace, but i don’t think any are as important as Partey individually.
    We’ve heard a lot about how we’ve been chasing Mudryk recently, but it *appears* as though we’re not pursuing a midfielder, which suggests we would intend to use elneny as our backup for partey (good player, but would still likely weaken the side severely imo).
    I’ve learned enough recently to not write off arteta and edu either in getting the team to play well or in making important signings (sometimes under the radar), but this might be our achilles heel, given Partey’s injury record since joining.

  16. Was worrying how easily we were overrun by Brighton when Partey, White and Zinchenko were taken off. We really need to get backup if we can in at least one of these positions with someone who is close to the level of one of the above three.

    1. This is the Partey Arsenal paid £45m for. He’s not even done 50% of his Athletico Madrid performances. He’s a real gem and it feels good to know goners are appreciating him. The fact that he also brings the best of his team mates is evident of his talent. A bit surprising his days at Arsenal has been full of injuries which was never the case in his La Liga days. The physicality of the EPL is real. Once he succeeds with Arsenal the world will come to believe Arteta made the right decision paying that much. I still think that Partey’s best is yet to be seen. Only praying for injury free season.
      Though I’m not a goner, I’ve enjoyed the current team so much. It’s good to see Arsenal back to where they belong. I’m praying the good season ends with at least a double for Arsenal.

    1. I’m still figuring out if we actually play with a DM as such.

      Some have suggested that we actually play with something more akin to a “deep-lying playmaker” who is then in a position to break up their attacks.

      I’ve tried looking at it, but cameras always focus on where the ball is so it’s hard to see where Partey is all the time. Those lucky devils who go to the games are in a better position to tell this kind of thing.

      Where’s Ken and Herr Drier when you need them? 😉

  17. HNY AdminPat and all,

    I have said many times this season that Partey is the engine of our team. He controls the tempo provides the attackers with balls that they can progress. He breaks up opposition attacks, slows the opposition down and generally manages the game. He and Odegaard are the two main transition players and both have played amazing this season. It shouldn’t be a surprise to see how Brighton came back into the game when both Partey and Odegaard were subbed. We lost the game management we had and we’re fortunate it didn’t cost us in the end. I know Arteta rates them both highly and manages the risk of taking them off to give them some rest before the Newcastle game it makes sense. We desperately need to sign a back up for Partey who can control games the way he does. We have both Veira and ESR who are good players to bring on for Odegaard but we don’t have anyone who can do what Partey does, this has to be a priority signing in January.

  18. As Arsenal look keen to sign Mykhailo Mudryk this Jan window for top quality options and rotation. So as to avoid Saka not to suffer a burn out as the season pans on. So too I think Arsenal should also this Jan sign a new holding midfielder for adequate options and rotation purpose to avoid seeing Partey getting burn out as the season wore on.
    I had thought Arsenal will go back this Jan for their last summer attempt to sign Danilo at Palmeiras and sign him this Jan.
    But if Sofiyan Amrabat at Florentina will be their preferred DMf to sign this Jan instead, I advice the club should sign him.
    I am sure Arteta knows that age is not on the side of Xhaka30, Elneny30 and Partey 29. As they are advancing in age and will get slower as time goes on. Besides, does Arteta needs a pair of top quality holding midfielders in his current first team squad in the mould of the former Chelsea’s duo of Mikel Obi and Matic? To better protect the Arsenal defense-line which conceded 2 goals to Brighton at away in the Epl yesterday. And will have conceded a 3rd goal but for the VAR who came to the rescuing the Gunners from seeing the game ON. After it was game over at 0-3, 1-3, 1-4 and 2-4 to us.

  19. Partey’s absence last term cost us a very aweful experience. Let’s forget about title hopes; even top 4 if he gets injured and we don’t have any another valuable alternative outside Lokonka and Elneney.

    Sign a valid defensive midfielder asap!!! The 2 guys above are good but don’t simply have that Partey level. As soon as he went out yesterday, we became helpless; terribly vulnerable

  20. Brothers let’s be realistic at some point if some does well, appreciate him, there’s no doubt on that, his the only CDM we have actually not only on arsenal but in premier league at large, I wonder if you could look at how he posses with the ball, tackling, how he shield the attacks of the opposing teams, he indeed the best, according to me the only player who can do wat he does I think his Tielmans en Amrabt , happy new year to you all anyway my fellows.

  21. I finally feel vindicated!!!

    To paraphrase Lionel Richie, for our evening matches….

    We have to have a Partey, all night long

  22. Thomas Partey is awesome. Great quality player. Probably the only prototype of him at the highest level. And he owes a lot to Arteta and Xhaka. Mikel Arteta had managed Partey beautifully, I don’t think the Ghanaian has been this fit, healthy and thriving under any manager before Arteta. And a big shoutout to Xhaka as well. He had been covering for Partey while supporting Odegaard for 2 seasons straight now. While both the extreme players are on a fantastic form, Xhaka is still running up and down like a diesel tractor. Let’s compare the number of games won and lost whenever Xhaka unavailable with that of Odegaard and Partey.

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